Thursday, February 26, 2009

Volunteers needed next Saturday at the RX!

Hey there! If you've got some free time next Saturday, March 7th, come on out to the ReBuilding Exchange and lend a hand.
There's lots to do including material organizing, unloading trucks, and making signage....
Send us an email and let us know you're coming

For more info about the ReBuilding Exchange, including location and hours, visit

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Material Exchange Reuse Fish Habitat Project

As as follow up to an earlier posting about Material Exchange's fantastic material reuse project involving a boat/bookshelf, that became a truck topper, that became a wooden turtle, that will become sunken fish habitat in a lake in Northern Michigan, here is a video documenting the whole process and material metamorphosis.

I'd Rather Be Fishin' from Material Exchange on Vimeo.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The ReBuilding Exchange is excited to announce our new business hours!

Starting Wednesday, February 18, 2009 we will be open:
Wednesdays 8am-4pm
Thursdays 12pm -8pm
Fridays 8am-4pm
Saturdays 10am-6pm
Sundays 12pm-4pm
We are closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

We hope to see you soon!

For more information about hours, location, donations, etc please check out our website

Monday, February 9, 2009

Check out the ReBuilding Exchange on ABC news!

Over 40 percent of the material that goes into landfills comes from construction and demolition waste. Now, two non-profit organizations have joined forces to reduce that number while offering bargains to consumers.

A non-profit organization called "The Reuse People" is taking apart properties piece by piece instead of flattening them with a wrecking ball. The process is called deconstruction. It costs more in time and money, but up to ninety-percent of building materials can be recovered and reused. The next step is to get the salvaged items into the hands of those who can use them.

A new retail store in the Brighton Park neighborhood called "The Rebuilding Exchange" could help connect the goods with people who need them.

"It's basically pennies on the dollar for what someone would be paying retail," said Ken Ortiz of The Reuse People.

The goal of the store is to divert construction debris from landfills and support sustainable building. It's a project of non-profit, The Delta Institute.

Elise Zelechowski of The Delta Institute said, "What happens in this space is there's some retail activity for the local community, for architects, for contractors. There's job training in deconstruction. There's educational workshops."

Anyone can purchase doors, windows, plumbing, cabinetry and virtually anything else you'd find in a home -- right down to the structural frame.

"The quality of some of the materials that we have here, you just can't buy in a retail warehouse operation like Home Depot," explained Ortiz. You just can't get 1903 lumber anymore."

The Rebuilding Exchange is celebrating its grand opening on Friday, February 13, 2009 from 6pm to 10pm.

West 47th Street

Chicago, Illinois

Monday, February 2, 2009

Interesting short film about building with waste...

Filmaker Laura Hanna made this short film, A City Made of Waste, in 2008 for the exhibition Home Delivery:Fabricating the Modern Dwelling at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Need helpers this Saturday!

Help us get ready for the ReBuilding Exchange grand opening party and come on out this Saturday, the 7th, between 10 and 6. We'll be getting crafty, making signs, hanging lights, and organizing our materials...
Send an email to if you can make it!


Reuse Project of Interest from our Friends at Material Exchange

Public Art Installation: "I'd Rather be Fishin' "
In conjunction with the Smart Museum's traveling exhibition
Beyond Green: Toward a Sustainable Art, members of Material Exchange have been invited to participate in a short project-based residency in Marquette, Michigan through February 2nd. The project began with a retired wooden fishing boat refashioned into a truck topper for transportation to the Upper Peninsula atop a slick Chevy Silverado rental. Upon reaching its destination, the topper will be transformed, yet again, as a sculpture to be installed upon the frozen inland body of water, Teal Lake. This sculpture will be collaboratively designed and built with several high school and college students while Material Exchange is in residence. The design will, in the warming months of spring, sink to the bottom of the lake and find it's final role as a freshwater fish habitat.

For more information please visit:

Related Event:
Friday, January 30, 2:00pm
Visiting Artist Presentation: Material Exchange
Art and Design Lecture Hall, Room 165

Saturday, January 31st, 3:00pm - ?
Public Art Installation and On-Site Fish Fry
Amidst the Teal Lake Ice Fishing Village

Hope to see you there- Bring your parkas!